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Director Andrew Lau plans to make TV debut with kung fu series

A Chinese director whose movie inspired Oscar-winner "The Departed" wants to make his TV debut with a Chinese-language kung fu series based on a comic book.

Andrew Lau said in an interview with the Chinese news Web site Sina.com that he hopes the series, called "A Bi Jian" in Chinese, will also spawn a movie and an online game.

Footage of the interview was posted on Sina.com on Monday.

Lau said he wants to give TV a try because it doesn't have the same time constraints as a movie.

"After making a movie, maybe you weren't able to shoot many of your ideas, because a movie is only 1 1/2 or two hours long, but TV gives you space to film a lot of things" he said.

Lau rose to fame after making the 2002 crime thriller "Infernal Affairs," which was remade by Martin Scorsese as "The Departed," starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson and Matt Damon. "The Departed" won an Oscar for Best Picture at the 2007 Academy Awards.

Lau has since shot the Hollywood movie "The Flock," starring Richard Gere and Claire Danes.

Lau said he plans to devote the same resources to his TV show as a movie, including computer special effects.

"I want to put elements from movies into TV to raise the quality of TV," he said.

The director didn't say how many episodes his new series will comprise or how much it will cost. He also didn't give a shooting schedule or say if anyone had commissioned the show.

Calls to Lau's office seeking more detail on the project went unanswered.

Sina.com said he visited Beijing recently to cast for the show.

The comic book "A Bi Jian," follows the struggles of a character born into difficult circumstances, according to Sina.com.

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